CSPR backs PS’s strong stance on illegal land allocation

The Civil Society for Poverty Reduction, CSPR, has expressed worry with the escalating incidences of illegal land allocation involving some civic leaders.

Provincial CSPR Coordinator, Maxson Nkhoma, says that his organization has been following events in which some civic leaders and political cadres have been giving out private land to new developers in referendum area.

He says the situation is disappointing that some senior officials are involved in illegal land allocation.

Mr. Nkhoma says CSPR in Eastern Province is in full support of the action taken by the permanent secretary, Chanda Kasolo, who called for the arrest of some civic leaders involved in land grabbing from former CH, Contract Haulage workers.

He says police should quickly arrest all those involved in private land grabbing in referendum area so that other people can learn.

Mr. Nkhoma further challenged the Chipata City Council to address matters of improper land allocation in Chipata without further delays.

He says CSPR is currently waiting to see how the council will address illegal land allocation challenges, before considering petitioning the Minister of Lands to invoke the land administering license for Chipata City Council.

Agro dealers waned against supplying expired inputs

Agro dealers, who supply inputs that are expired have been warned against the trend.

Eastern Province Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, CCPC Investigator, Emmanuel Zulu, says farmers have started reporting cases of some agro dealers trying to take advantage of their ignorance to supply them with expired inputs.

Mr. Zulu says action will be taken against all agro dealers, who have continued supplying farmers with inputs that are expired.

He says the positive feedback from farmers shows that there was lack of information among farmers before the sensitisation meetings that where recently conducted by CCPC.

Mr. Zulu has emphasized the need for farmers to be alert and report traders, who are selling expired inputs.

Chipata City Council faces challenges to maintain traffic lights

The Chipata City Council says that it is facing challenges to consistently maintain the operations of traffic lights, due to power interruptions.

Chipata City Council Town Clerk, Davies Musenge, says the traffic lights need re-setting every time there is power interruption.

He says this is a challenge because the technician, who installed the traffic lights, is based in Lusaka and that it takes time for him to come and work on them.

Mr. Musenge has assured the public that the traffic lights will soon be worked on.

He says the technician has already been informed on the matter.

A teacher in Katete murders wife

A teacher of Omelo Mumba Primary School in Katete district has been arrested for allegedly murdering his wife, with her head almost severed from the body.

Eastern Province Police Commissioner, Alex Chilufya has confirmed the gruesome murder, which happened yesterday between 12:30 and 13 hours after a marital dispute.

Mr. Chilufya says that Tobias Mwale aged 33 is reported to have murdered his 26 year old wife identified as Mumba Kalaba, a midwifery at Kasama General Hospital.

He says that a blood socked Machete was found at the scene with head almost severed from the body and cuts on the neck, shoulder and left wrist.

Mr. Chilufya says that the suspect is in Police custody for Murder.

Vincent Mwale assures Zambians over article 31

Government says that it has no ill intentions over President Edgar Lungu’s decision to invoke article 31 of the republican Constitution.

Local Government and Housing Minister, Vincent Mwale says that the move is aimed at protecting public infrastructure and Zambians.

Mr. Mwale says that the move is also aimed at ensuring that those behind a spat of arson cases recorded in the country account for their actions.

Speaking to Breeze News, Mr. Mwale also indicated that Vice President, Inonge Wina will soon give direction on the regulations that will come with article 31.

He maintained that the arson cases have a political influence because such cases have not been witnessed in the country before, until some politicians issued careless statements.

And Mr. Mwale says that the Preservation of the Public Security Act has not discouraged any investor from investing in Zambia.

He says that government has continued to record investor confidence adding that only failure to handle the current situation would scare away investors and the foreign community.

The minister, who is also Chipangali Constituency Member of Parliament, stated that only those involved in illegal activities have reasons to fear the invocation of article 31.

Kasolo gets tough on illegal land allocation

People, who are putting up structures near Referendum area, along the Great East Road in Chipata District, have been given a seven days ultimatum to demolish their buildings.

Eastern Province Permanent Secretary, Chanda Kasolo says the land in question is privately owned and the structures being built are illegal.

Speaking to journalists when he visited the area on Saturday, Mr. Kasolo says authorities will move in to demolish the structures after seven days, if the owners are not taking any action.

Mr. Kasolo has blamed Kanjala Ward Councilor, William Phiri for allocating plots on the land.

He says Mr. Phiri’s actions are illegal because the land in question belongs to retirees of CH, the Contract Haulage and that he will not allow lawlessness over the matter.

Mr. Kasolo says Mr. Phiri is allegedly allocating land to the developers without consent from the Chipata City Council, but emphasized that he will not allow the structures to be formalized.

He says he has instructed Eastern Province Police Commissioner, Alex Chilufya, to arrest Mr. Phiri for his actions and that he has to explain, why he found it fit to start allocating land illegally.

Mr. Kasolo availed a court order signed by Chief Justice Irene Mambilima on June 23rd, 2015 to the affected developers, which states that the land in question belongs to Contract Haulage retirees.

He advised the affected people to avail receipts to his office, from whoever sold the plots to them, stating that he will have to refund them.

Meanwhile, some Chisitu Zone Development Committee members, who claim to own the land, have vowed to remain on the land in question, as they have stayed there for over seventeen years.

The irate members, who did not fear the presence of the police, wondered why government has been quiet on the matter for many years.

And one of the affected developers, Teleka Chirwa, who bought three plots in the area, says when he consulted, he was assured that the land belongs to Chisitu Zone Development Committee.

And when contacted, Kanjala Ward councilor, William Phiri, says he will only comment on the matter after meeting the permanent secretary on Wednesday.


Police IG explains invocation of article 31

Police Inspector General Kakoma Kanganja says that the invocation of article 31 of the constitution does not mean that Zambia is in a state of emergency.

Mr. Kanganja has clarified that police have just been given extra powers to ensure that peace, public safety and order prevails in the country.

Speaking during a Press Briefing in Lusaka, Mr. Kanganja explained that during this period, Police will regulate and prohibit publication and dissemination of matters pre-judicial to public safety.

Police will also restrict and control assemblies, control movement more especially during hours of darkness, apprehension and detention of suspected criminals beyond 48 hours and search of places without a warrant.

Mr. Kanganja says that with these powers, Police have no reason to fail but instead, ensure that sanity, peace and order prevails in the country.

He however, noted that he will not allow any abuse of these powers entrusted in the police.

Mr. Kanganja warned that any officer, who abuses this act, will be disciplined accordingly.

He implored members of the public to take keen interest by reading the Preservation of the Public Security Act Chapter 112 of the Laws of Zambia to avoid speculation as well as being misinformed.

Road works start in Kaumbwe Constituency

Rehabilitation and construction of feeder roads in Kaumbwe Constituency in Petauke District has started.

Kaumbwe Constituency Member of Parliament, Listed Tembo, says a fifty-five kilometer road network is currently being constructed under the Ministry of Local Government.

Mr. Tembo says the road will connect a number of villages such as Matonge, Mando, Sanjama, Chizanda and Kanyanga.

He says rehabilitation works on other feeder roads will be done using CDF, the Constituency Development Fund.

Mr. Tembo says the road under construction has been in a deplorable state for over 45 years.

He says this has been affecting farmers especially in Chizanda area, who were completely cut off from Petauke boma.

He says residents in the area are happy over the development because their transportation challenges will now be eased.

RB public lecture pleases The Eastern University

The Eastern University has described as a strong send off the first public lecture, which was delivered by fourth republican President, Rupiah Banda.

Eastern University Chancellor, Justine Zulu said that he was impressed that history has shown that the concept of universities being set up by states was relatively new.

Dr. Zulu said that according to history the private sector and entities including the church were in the forefront of formalising learning in institutions.

He stated that this was encouraging to the Eastern University as it prepares to provide high learning to people in Eastern Province and the country as a whole.

Dr. Zulu agreed with the challenge provided by Mr. Banda for the university not to only have a bias towards agriculture but look at a bigger picture and focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

He said that the university’s original focus was on agriculture sciences so that it can hook up with extension services and research facilities along with scientific knowledge.

Dr. Zulu said that the university was alive to the fact that in today’s world, there is no discipline, which can survive without science.

The chancellor revealed that the university was excited because it has 300 hectares of land to expand and focus on agriculture extension services, and other areas of interest.

Former President calls for a holistic approach to improve agriculture

Former President Rupiah Banda says that agriculture will only become meaningful, if Zambians start doing things differently.

Speaking when giving the first public lecture for the Eastern University in Chipata last evening, Mr. Banda stated that Zambians needed to change their mind-set by first addressing their faculties.

The former head of state, stated that the emphasis on agriculture programmes, taken by the Eastern University was just an application of a branch of science.

He challenged the university to take a holistic view by looking at a bigger picture and focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Mr. Banda advised the university to start with these areas so that people can later branch in other scientific and management faculty like medicine, agriculture sciences, forestry and, tourism.

He also challenged the university to find a way in which it can participate in the science and mathematics teacher fast tracking training programme by the Ministry of Education for would be students.

The former president also referred to a recent news item on Breeze FM, which revealed that Eastern Province needed 4,000 teachers to address its staffing challenges and that the most critical areas are science, mathematics, ICT, Business studies and Zambian languages.

He says that this information and the good performance of pupils from Eastern Province in physics and chemistry in the 2016 grade 12 examinations, proves that there is reasonably a strong base from which the Eastern University could draw it’s would be students for such programmes.

Meanwhile former President Rupiah Banda has advised Zambians to maintain peace in the country.

Speaking to journalists after presenting his lecture for the Eastern University, Mr. Banda stated that without peace, Zambians cannot achieve anything.

He explained that every leader must call for peace to enable every Zambian achieve what they want to do.

And the Ministry of Education in Eastern Province has welcomed the setting up of the Eastern University in Chipata.

Provincial Education Officer, Allan Lingambe says that the approach taken by the university to have a bias towards agriculture is in line with the presidential directive to diversify the economy.

Speaking to journalists, Dr. Lingambe further stated that the aspirations of the university were agreeing with the nations’ aspirations.

He revealed that the Ministry of Education in Eastern Province is opening five schools, which will be centres of excellence in agriculture.

Dr. Lingambe stated that the ministry is currently in the process of identifying the five schools.

He pointed out that to make these schools effective, the ministry will need qualified teachers to man the departments.